The restored tomb of one of Britain’s powerful medieval families, the Fitzwilliam’s, was the highlight of Caroline Flint’s tour of St Marys Church, Tickhill this week.
Rev Chris Betson and Church Warden Phil Beavers showed Caroline the £750,000 renovation project completed at the 906 year old church. The restoration, funded by local donation and grants from English Heritage and the Diocese of Sheffield, includes the burial place in 1534 of Lucy Neville, the cousin of Ann Neville, wife of Richard III, the king whose remains were found under a car park in Leicester.
Said Caroline: “St Marys is the heart of this parish and the commitment of local people to fundraise and support this restoration is real credit to the parish and the Tickhill community. This huge effort reminds us all that churches are touched by centuries of history, a heritage we want to protect and have available for future generations.
“Rev Betson and his volunteers are keen to remind everyone that St Marys is great place to visit for anyone passing by or calling into Tickhill. The church is open 365 days a year. Within five minutes, visitors to this tomb will be swept back five centuries to an era of war and turmoil that left its lasting mark on Tickhill.
“The restoration of the stained glass, the statues on the bell tower, the archways and the tomb, make this well worth a visit for any historian and for anyone who enjoys the quiet of one of South Yorkshire’s great churches.”
PHOTOS: A peek into the past – l to r Phil Beavers, Caroline Flint and Rev Chris Betson examine the restored Fitzwilliam Tomb.